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Minnesota Posts Solid Job Growth in January; Wage Growth Outpaces Inflation

St. Paul - Minnesota gained 3,000 jobs from December to January, meaning the state has seen job growth for nine out of the past 12 months, according to numbers released today by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED).

Average hourly wages for all private sector workers in Minnesota increased 56 cents to $37.46 in January 2024 over the month and they were up $1.78, or 5.0%, over the year. The Consumer Price Index (CPI), a common inflation measure, rose 3.1% over the year in January, meaning wage increases were 1.9 points higher than inflation over the year.

“Minnesota continues to see healthy job growth and wages are outpacing inflation, both of which are great news for workers,” said DEED Commissioner Matt Varilek. “During our tight labor market, DEED’s workforce development programs help prepare more Minnesotans to enter high-demand employment with family-sustaining wages.”

Later this month, DEED will announce the grantees that will implement the Drive for 5. This innovative job training and placement initiative is grounded in industry sector partnerships to align employer needs with training programs in five high-growth career fields: technology, the trades, caring professions, manufacturing and education.

Minnesota's unemployment rate remained at 2.7% in January 2024, the same as the revised December 2023 rate. The labor force decreased by 1,981 people over the month, nudging the labor force participation rate down one-tenth of a percentage point to 67.9%.

Minnesota posted 0.1% monthly job growth overall in January, with the private sector up 0.2%. The U.S. total nonfarm employment and private sector employment were both up 0.2%. The U.S. unemployment rate stayed at 3.7% and the national labor force participation rate remained at 62.5%.

Over the month, five supersectors in Minnesota gained jobs on a seasonally adjusted basis:

• Education & Health Services gained 2,600 jobs

• Trade, Transportation & Utilities gained 1,100 jobs

• Leisure & Hospitality gained 800 jobs

• Professional & Business Services gained 600 jobs

• Information gained 100 jobs

"Over the year, Minnesota gained over 29,000 payroll jobs,” said DEED's Labor Market Information Director Angelina Nguyễn. "Most notably, Education and Health Services gained 23,649 jobs, up 4.3%. This growth was propelled by the Healthcare and Social Assistance sector, especially Nursing and Residential Care Facilities, and Social Assistance."

Among Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) headquartered in Minnesota, the Rochester MSA was the biggest job gainer by percentage over the year, with 3,890 added jobs, up 3.2%. The Minneapolis-St. Paul MSA was the biggest job gainer by number, up 6,010 jobs over the year, or 0.3%.

Every March, DEED and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics release revised employment numbers for the past several years. These annual benchmarking revisions always result in minor shifts for some months of data for the unemployment rate, the labor force participation rate and the job count. This year’s revisions did not result in substantial shifts in the labor market situation. Any time data has been revised from previous reports, this is noted as revised. The revisions happen annually because of new population controls, new seasonal adjustment factors, and more comprehensive employment counts becoming available.

DEED is the state’s principal economic development agency, promoting business recruitment, expansion and retention, workforce development, international trade and community development. Visit the DEED website to view state and national employment statistics, monthly jobs numbers and data. You can also find alternative measures of unemployment on the DEED website. In addition, see related articles about job growth and labor market changes in the latest issue of Minnesota Employment Trends. Find out how DEED delivers for Minnesota by visiting the DEED website,, or follow us on X


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